We all have family functions coming up this holiday season. Some of us can recall good memories of past holiday gatherings and some of us have horror stories to tell. Let’s not forget the stress of getting to know your new in-laws! Families can cause a lot of stress whether we like it or not. How does this affect your marriage?
We all have dysfunctional families to at least some degree. There is always a family drunk, a family gossip and a family bitch. We attend family gathers usually because we feel we have to. The stress builds for weeks before the event. For whatever reason, and even if we'd rather be ANYWHERE else, we go!
When it comes to my family functions it starts with a phone call and a whole lot of guilt. I don't know why, but I can't seem to tell them right then, and there, "NO!" I tell my husband the so called "plans" for whatever holiday. We figure out what we can and what we can't do. Then I figure out how to handle my family. See; when we got married we agreed that I would deal with my family, and he would deal with his. I always wish I could deal with his!
Talking with my husband is the easy part because he knows my family, and what I go through with them, so he supports me. Sometimes, I feel that he is there holding me up. I know am bitchy. For me, the cure for bitchy is a whole lot more sex. For me, it is the best stress reliever. The problem is that as we get closer to the holiday I am so nervous I can't be touched, I don't sleep and I barely eat. Then my husband gets worried about me and the stress between us builds to an almost intolerable level.
My marriage begins to feel a lot like my parents marriage and that hurts. When I was little my Mom and Dad fought about which family to go to first each holiday. They fought over how much money they would spend. They were like like two little kids, fighting about whether each of them spent more money on his/her family. They would also fight over whether we were going to church, or not. Oh, it was so fun to wake up that morning!
The arguing in our house was something inevitable to look forward to when I was a girl. Dad would leave and go to his mom’s house. Then Mom would start her crap, "Your hair is not right go re-do it." Or, "Change your clothes." Oh, we would go through this for hours! Noon would come and we MIGHT be ready to go. Then she would blame us for being late, and yell at us all the way there. Oh yes, holidays were so much fun.
When I was on my own I just never allowed myself to be around my parents. It was so much easier during the holidays, since the holidays had no meaning to me by this point in my life. I didn't even want to have a family. I grew up and actually did have my own family. I wanted to give my kids holidays that were great. I found myself so stressed from trying to make the day perfect for them that I was stressing everyone out. My husband finally pointed this out. Thank God. I learned that no matter how hard we try the day will be what it will be, most years they have been great.
When we have to go to a big family function it is hard. I don't want my kids to go through what I did as a child. It becomes stressful weeks before because I am thinking about everything. I am still processing the abuse I suffered as a child and trying my best to shield my children from the same abuse. The conflicts seem the same though; if we go to my Dad’s family, then I feel I have to go to my Mom’s family and vice versa.
We used to live over five hours away. I had a good excuse not to go for many years. Then I got roped in, once. I was so nervous that I was almost sick. My husband almost called and told my Mom we were not coming. See, my Mom and I don't see eye to eye so it adds stress to any time I have to be near her. I wasn't sleeping, I was barely eating and I was snippy. My husband and I were not having any sex at all so there was no relief from the stress and I felt disconnected from everyone.
This time things would be a little different and I learned how important sex is to keeping me connected and grounded. When we arrived at my Mom's house I could barely could stand myself. I was emotional all the way there and couldn't control it. Standing in my mom’s house again after so long made my skin crawl. Being there brought back so much emotion that I felt that I was flying apart at the seams. I had let the family history define me for so long. I knew I was spinning out of control. By this time we were just two hours from everyone showing up. I needed to get control of my emotions, and my thoughts. I had to take control again.
I grabbed my husband I went to my Mom’s bathroom. No one goes in there! I took full advantage of him right then and there. I had sex every which way I could in that room. I felt the release that I had needed for days. Not only did I reclaim my sexual freedom; I also gained freedom from my history, in that moment of relief. The stress just melted away. I felt so much better that I didn't care if anyone found us. Just to be able to do something totally forbidden was so hot too!
For so many years my Mom influenced the way I hate my body and even how I would hold myself back in the bedroom. This holiday was part of getting back to me; someone I have not really seen in a long, long time. Now a days when we have to go to a family function we always sneak off for that sexual release. I wish I would have started to deal with my feelings earlier in life. I wish I had figured out my past before I had children. The thing is, I do think they see where I come from and have learned a lot. Sometimes I wish they had not. I also wish I had figured out the sexual release thing at family functions earlier as well. It has been the only way to get through the holiday dinners. I guess you can call me the family sex addict, but I love every bit of it!